The Spurs might still address the point guard position.…

4 years ago via ESPN
The Spurs might still address the point guard position. They’ve shown interest, according to sources, in bringing back Utah’s George Hill, who spent the first three years of his career in San Antonio before leaving in the trade that brought Leonard into the fold. A Hill signing doesn’t appear too imminent, however, as he has garnered interest from multiple teams that could push his value beyond what San Antonio is willing to pay.

More on George Hill Free Agency

To that end, they've been trying in recent days to unload some salary to make a competitive offer to a veteran point guard. According to sources, their top target at the moment is Utah Jazz free agent George Hill. New York made its interest in Hill previously known but didn't reach out to the 31-year-old in the early hours of free agency, per sources. (Sources say the Denver Nuggets were among the teams to reach out to Hill.)
Denver has reached out to George Hill since the free agency period started but the Knicks have not yet, per league sources. Denver has serious interest in Hill but would need to create cap space to sign the point guard. The club can do that by letting Danilo Gallinari walk in free agency.
Ian Begley: Knicks haven't yet reached out to George Hill since free agency started, per sources. Many in the organization see him as a target though.
Sam Amick: George Hill becomes an option for Minnesota in wake of this Ricky Rubio trade, I'm told. @Zach Lowe notes Jeff Teague a possibility too
Jody Genessy: Another source confirms that Gordon Hayward really wants the Utah Jazz to bring back George Hill. His decision could hinge on that. The Jazz are in a pickle because they're trying to get a cheaper veteran than George Hill so they can pay Gordon Hayward and Joe Ingles.
George Hill, having just completed the final year of a five-year, $40 million deal that he originally signed with the Pacers in 2012, has changed agents prior to becoming an unrestricted free agent on July 1. Hill has hired Matthew Ward, Ward confirmed to VigilantSports.com. This isn’t a new relationship between the two; Ward has served as Hill’s financial advisor for nearly a decade.
Some members of the organization also see point guard George Hill as a potential free-agent target. Hill had a strong season in Utah and most around the league expect him to remain with the Jazz or end up in San Antonio. Minnesota, which has interest in several top point guards, also could be a destination for Hill. The Knicks would likely have to create cap space to sign either Teague or Hill.
The Spurs selected Hill 26th overall in the 2008 NBA draft. The team then traded the point guard, who is constantly labeled as one of Popovich’s favorite players, in 2011 to secure the draft rights to Kawhi Leonard, Davis Bertans, and Erazem Lorbek. League sources told the Express-News the Spurs have yet to make any contact with Hill regarding a potential return, but expect the team to do so once free agency begins July 1.
As for Hill, Lindsey was just as adamant that the Jazz want him back in 2017-18, although he acknowledged that the team may not be able match all offers Hill receives. “I told him if he gets a crazy offer somewhere else and we helped him get that offer, ‘you’re not going to get one poor thought, much less a word (from us)’ if he were to go,” Lindsey said. “He helped us.”
“There’s a very good chance, we’re each other’s best option come July,” Lindsey said. “But I’m not Nostradamus with a crystal ball and know how all of this is going to play out. But he’s obviously an excellent fit on the court and he has what we call a Jazz DNA.”
Utah general manager Dennis Lindsey and coach Quin Snyder have done everything right in constructing a burgeoning Western Conference contender, but they’ll have to withstand the Boston Celtics’ push for Hayward on July 1. Winning a playoff series, getting a crack at the Golden State Warriors, gives Hayward a better prism with which to imagine his Utah future. The plan for Utah is unmistakable: Offer Hayward a max deal, re-sign point guard George Hill and turn these 51-win Jazz toward 60 victories and push for a conference finals appearance sooner rather than later.
He’ll have unprecedented freedom next summer. A renegotiation-and extension could have kept him off the market, giving him security with a team that uses him well. But Hill isn’t dwelling on it. “It’s over. There’s nothing we can do about it now,” Hill said. “But I’m here to help the Jazz win basketball games. I’m not focused on a contract right now. We’ll get to that when the season is over, but right now, our main focus is to win basketball games and me to play my butt off.”
After the Jazz make their first playoff appearance in five years and likely win their first playoff game in seven years, they’ll have to evaluate the value of the point guard who helped get them there. Likewise, Hill will face major decisions about his priorities. He and Utah were eligible to sign a renegotiation-and-extension that could have paid him $88,684,652 through 2019-20, but they didn’t strike a deal by last month’s deadline.
Specifically, Windhorst said the Nets are likely to pursue Hill, who’s seen as a solid two-way player and leader. Unlike the other two, there would be no opportunity to match. You sign, you play. The best offer wins the day. “There is a belief that the Brooklyn Nets might have interest in going there. And even if George Hill isn't interested in playing for the Brooklyn Nets, the Nets could make the offer is what is dangerous part for the Jazz ... and for the Spurs. They can drive the price up.
But it’s impossible to deny how much of a difference Hill, a steady hand who is averaging 17.6 points and 4.1 assists, has made for the Jazz this season. Utah is 25-10 when he plays and 12-13 when injuries have forced him to sit. “I think the statistics for us as a team and for him individually kind of speak for themselves,” said face of the franchise Gordon Hayward, who is all but assured to get a max contract assuming he opts to become a free agent this summer. “He’s obviously come in and been a leader in the locker room, too, [and] a leader out on the court for us. He plays with toughness, plays with poise offensively. He’s a big part of why we’ve been successful this year.”
Tim MacMahon‏: George Hill declined to discuss potential future in Utah: "I don't want to talk about none of that. I'm just here to win games right now."
Jody Genessy: Can confirm that George Hill will not sign an extension with the Utah Jazz this season. He'll be a top priority this offseason for the team.
Aaron Falk: Breaking: George Hill and the Jazz will not reach a deal on a contract extension, league sources tell The Salt Lake Tribune. Story to come
Tim MacMahon: Whether or not Jazz get a George Hill extension done by deadline, the veteran PG figures prominently in team's future plans.
Sources told ESPN that the sides continue to work toward an agreement in hopes of beating the league's annual deadline for what is known in the NBA as a renegotiation-and-extension. Such deals can't be struck between March 1 and June 30 of any salary-cap year. Hill has recently declined to discuss a potential contract extension but told ESPN in November that he was "very interested" in the idea. Sources said the Jazz are determined to keep Hill for the long term even if extension terms can't be reached Tuesday and Hill decides he would rather test the open market starting July 1.
The Jazz can give Hill -- who is making $8 million in the final season of his contract -- the rest of its cap space this season and an extension of up to three years with annual raises of 7.5 percent. The best offer Utah can make Hill is for $88.3 million to be committed to the Jazz through the 2019-20 season, which computes to a three-year, $74.7 million extension plus $13.6 million this season.
The general vibe from the Jazz is they will re-sign Hill in the offseason, but like many of the players on this list, there is a risk that Hill walks away. Sources close to the Hill situation say he’s really happy in Utah and staying long term is not at all out of the question.
Extending Hill now is the best hedge against Hayward leaving. Losing both would eviscerate Utah's perimeter rotation; it is Utah's doomsday scenario. But Hill may wait out Hayward's decision; the two are close, with shared Indiana roots and Indy-based trainers. Even so, Hill would at least listen if the Jazz approached with an offer today. "I was never one who wanted to move from team to team," Hill told ESPN.com. "If the opportunity to stay is there, I'd love to take it."
Utah's cap space can be used to make a robust in-season extension offer to either point guard George Hill or big man Derrick Favors. And ... According to the latest rumbles in circulation on the matter, Hill has emerged as Utah's priority here.
It’s an open secret that Utah wants to sign new point guard George Hill to an extension that keeps him off the free-agent market this summer. Hill, for his part, recently made it clear to our own Tim MacMahon that he would be “very interested in that.” The reality, though, is that Hill, earning $8 million this season in the final year of his last contract with Indiana, is playing far too well to do an extension starting from that salary range, given all the spending money that will be sloshing around the NBA next summer. Yet as Hill also told MacMahon: “I’m not the type of guy that likes to move around and go from team to team. I really like it here.” The Jazz have to love the sound of that.
Hayward is expected to opt out of his $16.7 million player option and become an unrestricted free agent this summer. Hill is in the final year of his contract worth $8 million and will also become an unrestricted free agent. While Utah has a well-regarded young nucleus that should only get better – especially after locking up Rudy Gobert to a long-term extension – Hill isn’t looking toward his future yet. “I don’t know,” Hill said. “I’m really not here to answer [questions about] extension or contract situations and things like that. I’m going to let Dennis Lindsey and the front office handle that and my agents. My focus is just to play basketball and try to get us to the playoffs.”
Hill said he hopes to remain with the Jazz long term. "I'm not the type of guy that likes to move around and go from team to team," said Hill, who leads the Jazz with 21.4 points and 4.6 assists per game. "I really like it here. My family likes it here. I've got some friends here. The city's been great for me so far, and it's a nice place to raise a family, so hopefully I get an opportunity to re-sign here if they would love me to be here."
The Jazz see PG George Hill as a long-term fit and could attempt to sign him to an extension this season, preventing him from hitting the free agency market in the summer. "If that's the case, then I would be very interested in that," Hill told ESPN. "But I'm going to let them take care of that and just do what I can control."
With one year remaining on his contract, and without an extension (for which he is eligible in October), Hill will become an unrestricted free agent next summer. Hill said that's not on his mind, however. He knows he will play a big role for the Jazz this season, and his potential value on the market next summer could be significant. Still, the focus is on playing this season and trying to win as much as possible. He knows if he does that, the dominoes will fall into place. "I haven't really talked about that much with anyone," Hill said. "My whole focus is to come in here and be the best player that I can possibly be. I feel that the contract situation will work itself out, once you do that."
Storyline: George Hill Free Agency
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